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ImmenseDisciple
Jan 9th 2008, 09:15 PM
14 Then God said, “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs and seasons, and for days and years; 15 and let them be for lights in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth”; and it was so. 16 Then God made two great lights: the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night. He made the stars also. 17 God set them in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth, 18 and to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness. And God saw that it was good. 19 So the evening and the morning were the fourth day.
In stating here that the Sun and the Moon are "two great lights" is God explicitly saying to us that His account of creation is to be taken as metaphorical? It goes without saying that He knew full well we would learn for ourselves that the moon is not "a light", it's apparent glow merely a reflection of the sun, so is this His pointer to us that we aren't to take Genesis literally?
Plenty of discussion please :D

Buck shot
Jan 9th 2008, 09:49 PM
What is a light? Does it have to create illumination from energy? Some animals create illumination, are they lights?

Either way it is a good word study, this should be interesting!

I believe the entire Bible is black and white (unless you use a rainbow Bible) and I take it as it's written. God is not a God of confusion. It would have been really hard for folks back then to understand the universe. Maybe God knew we would figure out that you have to give babies milk before meat.

fightingfalcon
Jan 9th 2008, 11:12 PM
In stating here that the Sun and the Moon are "two great lights" is God explicitly saying to us that His account of creation is to be taken as metaphorical? It goes without saying that He knew full well we would learn for ourselves that the moon is not "a light", it's apparent glow merely a reflection of the sun, so is this His pointer to us that we aren't to take Genesis literally?
Plenty of discussion please :D

This is a argument used by evolutionists to prove the bible is not inspired and there is no God... you can claim otherwise but that is in fact were it originated, actually an atheistic doubt.

First of all for those of you who believe in evolution and still claim to believe in the Bible I pray you are delivered... the Bible is quite clear "God created" - what part of created don't you understand? Also if we evolved during the "creation" process explain to me the part where God puts Adam to sleep to take his bone to make Eve... this doesn't fit in and if Adam had been evolving this would be literally millions of years later...

Genesis is quite clear on how God created things... we have no reason and no authority to interpret it otherwise.

About the lights... even educated people of this day and age use the word "light" to refer to what is in fact reflected light and which in and of itself does not produce light... if God was symbolizing something here pray tell what would it be? Also when God uses symbolism he doesn't have literal correlation... in other words if these are symbolic then why is there a LITERAL moon and sun? What exactly do you suppose these are symbolizing?
This argument makes very little sense to me.

Keep in mind that evolution was created by the devil, when it started(it was very possible compared to what they knew at that time) Christians wouldn't dream of believing that baloney... now in a day and age when most of the evolutionistic theory has been proven wrong by science itself... it is now creeping into the church. My God said He created the earth, that is good enough for me.

TEITZY
Jan 9th 2008, 11:24 PM
I find this whole idea extremely tenuous. Your metaphor idea breaks down completely because we know the sun is an actual light and it is included with the moon as one of the "great lights". So to be consistent in your case, the sun must also be a metaphor. God through Moses is simply trying to convey the idea that there are two great lights in the sky and the fact that one is a source of light and the other merely a reflector of light is irrelevant.

If we are honest we all know what God is trying to convey in Genesis through a natural or normal reading of the text (which is an historical narrative meant to be taken literally). It's only evolutionary and old-earth bias that compels people to reinterpret Genesis because the 'scientists' must be right. But of course the issue of origins is not a scientific one at all in the empirical sense, since it cannot be tested, rather it is a worldview through which everything must be filtered, including the Word of God it seems (Surely the Bible is our final authority not man).

So how much of Genesis is metaphoric/symbolic and how much is literal? Sure you can pick and choose and make it fit the prevailing scientific paradigm of the day, but where do you stop?

Cheers
Leigh

jeffweeder
Jan 10th 2008, 12:24 AM
God created the moon to be a light, and through sheer Genious it is a light.

Gulah Papyrus
Jan 10th 2008, 02:03 AM
I still am not convinced that believing in evolutiuon means you can't also believe that the Bible is the inerrant word of God. There are metphors all over the Bible just like this one. I believe that the Bible's purpose is to bring people to God, not to satisfy our scientific curiosity. The creation story is vague for a reason. We are not suppose to study it for clues to 'how' exactly it all came together, we are to study it to get clues as to 'why' it all came together. I don't understand what the 'how' has to do with anything. It came together through God's word. Whether of not it came together in an instant, or over billions of years really doesn't concern me. What does concern me is that no matter how it came together, it came together by His power.

Like, the way Christians interpreted prophesy 1000 years ago is not the exact way it is interpreted today. There are events that have taken place in the last 1000, even in the last 100 years, and inventions...do you think 1000 years ago they had anny idea of what some of the prophesy about flying scorpions with loud wings meant?...and the fire from the sky and all that stuff, but now with the technology we have we can make more sense of it or at least consider that it might be nuclear weapons and military helicopters etc. These things have given us cause to go back and rethink some long held ideas about scripture. This same thing could happen with what we learn about scientifically. I for one am not afraid of science, God wants us to study his creation. It is natural to think that we have all the information we need at this point, but every generation from the beginning has thought that, and every generation has been wrong. I don't know why we would expect to be any different. I don't know how the two(creation and evolution)are connected, or even if they are, but to shut it off as a possibility could prevent us from seeing some unbelievable, magnificent aspect of Gods power and glory that we haven't yet discovered.

And the idea that you can't belilve in the Bible and Jesus Christ and think that maybe someday that evelutionary science could find it's place, to me is not right.

my $.02

fightingfalcon
Jan 10th 2008, 03:45 AM
I still am not convinced that believing in evolutiuon means you can't also believe that the Bible is the inerrant word of God. There are metphors all over the Bible just like this one. I believe that the Bible's purpose is to bring people to God, not to satisfy our scientific curiosity. The creation story is vague for a reason. We are not suppose to study it for clues to 'how' exactly it all came together, we are to study it to get clues as to 'why' it all came together. I don't understand what the 'how' has to do with anything. It came together through God's word. Whether of not it came together in an instant, or over billions of years really doesn't concern me. What does concern me is that no matter how it came together, it came together by His power.

The bible doesn't teach it so to believe it you have to "tweak" the bible to make it say what you understand or believe it to say... the Bible says clearly God "created", He doesn't say God "set in motion", or God "began", He said God "created" and always adds with "it was so"... there is an instant action after His words... there is no room in the creation account for evolution... one of the most prominent evolutionists scoffed at the idea of Christians believing in evolution and stated something like "the theory of evolution and Christianity combined are an oxi-moron." you can find it by doing a search on google for something like "quotes by evolutionists" or something like that.





And the idea that you can't belilve in the Bible and Jesus Christ and think that maybe someday that evelutionary science could find it's place, to me is not right.

my $.02

Someday? Evolution has lost so much of its "probability" that science is actually looking for another theory to take its place... not kidding, do the research... there is so much we have learned over the past 100, even 50 years that even devout Atheists are beginning to say "hey this couldn't have just evolved, its too precise..."

Study the eye, it is one of the most compelling arguments against evolution... and your argument probably would be "but God can do anything" - exactly so why do you need to come up with an evolution theory for him to have used which is not presented in the creation account in the bible?

Evolution and Christianity are complete opposites... anyone who has studied them both will agree... if we doubt the creation account it can lead to other serious doubts, was there really a flood? How far do you take it?

Gulah Papyrus
Jan 10th 2008, 04:26 AM
The bible doesn't teach it so to believe it you have to "tweak" the bible to make it say what you understand or believe it to say... the Bible says clearly God "created", He doesn't say God "set in motion", or God "began",

Sure it does. "In the beginning..."

The word 'creation' isn't necessarily subject to any time frame, at least not according to Websters.

Who is this Prominant evolutionist? Darwin was a Christian. Most of the early evolutionists were Christians. It wasn't until the Atheists got ahold of Darwins theory that it started to become one against the other. The early communist Atheists loved 'evolution' because if they could use Darwin to prove that there is no God then the poeple would turn to Government.

I have done lots of research which is why I have gone from discounting science to wondering if it is totally necessary.

I'm sorry to bring it up, I know it is a very touchy subject, but the things I have learned over the last year have caused me to re-examine it.

Do you believe that the universe is only 6000 years old? If it is then why would God leave so much evidence to the contrary, and if you say it is to test our faith...well, I will have no comment.

Zorgblar
Jan 10th 2008, 10:24 AM
This is a argument used by evolutionists to prove the bible is not inspired and there is no God... you can claim otherwise but that is in fact were it originated, actually an atheistic doubt.

First of all for those of you who believe in evolution and still claim to believe in the Bible I pray you are delivered... the Bible is quite clear "God created" - what part of created don't you understand? Also if we evolved during the "creation" process explain to me the part where God puts Adam to sleep to take his bone to make Eve... this doesn't fit in and if Adam had been evolving this would be literally millions of years later...

Genesis is quite clear on how God created things... we have no reason and no authority to interpret it otherwise.

About the lights... even educated people of this day and age use the word "light" to refer to what is in fact reflected light and which in and of itself does not produce light... if God was symbolizing something here pray tell what would it be? Also when God uses symbolism he doesn't have literal correlation... in other words if these are symbolic then why is there a LITERAL moon and sun? What exactly do you suppose these are symbolizing?
This argument makes very little sense to me.

Keep in mind that evolution was created by the devil, when it started(it was very possible compared to what they knew at that time) Christians wouldn't dream of believing that baloney... now in a day and age when most of the evolutionistic theory has been proven wrong by science itself... it is now creeping into the church. My God said He created the earth, that is good enough for me.

You claim that evolution was created by man correct?But in truth this is wrong evoltion was created by MAN.Have you ever heard of a man named charles darwin?He's the one who thought this up not the devil.

daughter
Jan 10th 2008, 12:56 PM
maw-ore', meh-o-raw'

The word from which our term "meteor" derives. That is to say, not "light" as in radiance, but light as an instrument which gives light - a lamp, a candle, for example. Objects which reflect light, like the moon, are also "light bearers", instruments of light, and not light itself.

The word for pure light, brilliancy, is "owr", and this is the light that God created in the beginning. "In the beginning was light". However, the two great "lights" could be translated, "two great lamps." There is no English to describe this distinction clearly, but it was very obvious to the first readers.

Therefore, there is no contradiction with the moon being referred to as a "light", since it is a light bearer, giver, one that reflects, as is the sun. True light is greater than either, and it is only in the Bible that the order of creation shows heavenly luminaries being created AFTER the beginning... which modern scientists now accept.

Buck shot
Jan 10th 2008, 01:30 PM
Nice post Daughther, I think you brought some true "light" into the discussion.

Note for Zorgblar, Darwin only studied and wrote a book of evolution. It was not his original idea. I truly believe there is more to the world around us than we can see and there is one that is way smarter than I that just roams around coming up with ways to hurt the kingdom.

RevLogos
Jan 10th 2008, 01:55 PM
My thinking is that God told the story of creation in terms His audience could understand. His audience are people from some 5000 years ago. There was no science, no scientific method, and no technology. People had a vague understanding of only the small part of the earth they were in, of fire, water, air, light, dark, pinpoints of light in the sky, and the Moon. That’s about it.

Suppose for example the “Big Bang” were true and God wanted to describe it.


“Well folks, one day there was nothing, then there was this big explosion…”

“Uh, God, I have a question. What’s an explosion?” No one has seen or heard an explosion. How would one describe it? Just as John in Revelation, has no concept of bombs dropped from a plane, but describes gigantic hailstones weighing hundreds of pounds each.

So God gives them as good a description as He can so that they understand and focus on the really important key points without becoming a mass of confusion. Those being: God created the heavens and the earth, and it was good. God created Man in His image, and this was good too. Mankind was created with purpose, and with free will to love and obey God. Then Satan entered the world and screwed everything up, which was not so good. And the rest is history.

I just don’t get hung up on these details. I figure science will eventually figure out enough of the story that we can see why God chose the description He gave.

coldfire136
Jan 10th 2008, 02:32 PM
Originally posted by ImmenseDisciple
In stating here that the Sun and the Moon are "two great lights" is God explicitly saying to us that His account of creation is to be taken as metaphorical? It goes without saying that He knew full well we would learn for ourselves that the moon is not "a light", it's apparent glow merely a reflection of the sun, so is this His pointer to us that we aren't to take Genesis literally?

You have brought this up in an interesting way. I would rather argue that a good reading of the text forces us to see the words in light of the ancient near eastern context. We have to understand how the Jews would have read this. If you read the text, the purpose of the light seems to be to delineate seasons. This would have been very important to an agricultural society and would have been very important because God stands over this creation as God of the sun, the moon, and the seasons. They needed to know that God would be with them.


Originally Posted by Buckshot
I believe the entire Bible is black and white (unless you use a rainbow Bible) and I take it as it's written. God is not a God of confusion. It would have been really hard for folks back then to understand the universe. Maybe God knew we would figure out that you have to give babies milk before meat.


1. What do you mean the bible is "black and white?"
2. What do you mean you "take it as written?"
3. What do you mean God is not a God of confusion (before answering do a search for the thread on this scripture)?
4. What do you mean by your last sentence?

You basically said nothing in your post because you were not clear in defining your terms. I have no idea how to respond to them.


Originally Posted by FightingFalcon
This is a argument used by evolutionists to prove the bible is not inspired and there is no God... you can claim otherwise but that is in fact were it originated, actually an atheistic doubt.

I'm tired of arguing about this on the board, but this is simply not true. There are many types of evolution, types of evolutionists, and YOU would not like being lumped into one general category of Christian.

fightingfalcon
Jan 10th 2008, 03:43 PM
Sure it does. "In the beginning..."

The word 'creation' isn't necessarily subject to any time frame, at least not according to Websters.

No it does not... the Bible says "created"... you can claim it "could have happened" but there remains the FACT that the Bible NOWHERE supports it... this leads us back to the same question, why would an all-powerful God need to use evolution when He could just as easily(HE DID) create the earth... this is a ploy of the devil to discount the power of God and degrade it by using evolution...

When the disciples and Christ were on the ship and He was sleeping... did God use evolution our "natural process" to stop the winds and forces? NO he used His voice... evolution has no place in the bible, you can claim it but i'd rather follow what the Bible says... when Christ comes He isn't going to say, "Sorry Randy, we can't take you to heaven... you believed in Creation, you believed that when I said in the Bible I created, you took that literally and believed that I actually created the Earth..."

That will not happen, yet the bible curses those who should tamper with the Bible and ADD or SUBTRACT from it... if its not there don't try and warp it into being there... the bible said

"And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul."

The original word here is yatser which is "to mold" as in a potter... this is a physical interaction between the creator and the created... this word proves it. The bible says "He formed him our of the dust" - no room for evolution here... read on:

"and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul"

Notice that he BECAME a living soul... if this was evolutionary process he would have started as a micro-nothingness and over millions of years became a human BUT he would still have been breathing... evolution and the bible contradict each other, they are like day and night...

Read this article:
http://www.answersingenesis.org/docs/4005.asp

The idea that humans evolved is absurd and most evolutionists now days know it... even though some will never admit it...

"Question is: Can you tell me anything you know about evolution, any one thing, any one thing that is true? I tried that question on the geology staff at the Field Museum of Natural History and the only answer I got was silence. I tried it on the members of the Evolutionary Morphology Seminar in the University of Chicago, a very prestigious body of evolutionists, and all I got there was silence for a long time and eventually one person said, 'I do know one thing - it ought not to be taught in high school.'"
-Dr. Colin Patterson (Senior Paleontologist, British Museum of Natural History, leading cladistic taxonomist), Keynote address at the American Museum of Natural History, New York City, November 5, 1981.

"I myself am convinced that the theory of evolution, especially the extent to which it's been applied, will be one of the great jokes in the history books of the future. Posterity will marvel that so very flimsy and dubious an hypothesis could be accepted with the incredible credulity that it has."
-Malcolm Muggeridge (world famous journalist and philosopher), Pascal Lectures, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.


Do these quotes proof evolution is wrong? No but they prove that many scientific minds, geniuses through the ages who had studied evolution BELIEVING it have turned against it... it proves that those who have studied it thoroughly, if they are honest conclude there is actually very little evidence to support evolution.. and if you really knew how much evidence for creation has been found by these scientists and IGNORED because it does not fit with their views, it would utterly blow your mind away.
Having said this I should also mention that there are creationists scientists(not all, but some unfortunately) will find data which appears to support evolution and they also hide as it doesn't fit into the creation account... both these are wrong and it is the reason that evolution has existed so long, if scientists presented all the facts there would be no doubt that evolution is the biggest baloney that ever has surfaced...

But to say that evolution has so much proof is an utter contradiction to science... it isn't there.





Do you believe that the universe is only 6000 years old? If it is then why would God leave so much evidence to the contrary, and if you say it is to test our faith...well, I will have no comment.

So much evidence? Where have you been?


And for those of you who claim Darwin created the theory... study the era of Darwin, study all of the satanic theories and ideas which arose from that time period, if it doesn't convince you evolution is of the devil than I don't think anything will... I know a number of hardened evolutionists have been convicted by this very fact.

I believe this is the mp3 on it:
http://www.audioverse.org/displayrecording/532/IvorMyers-TheBeastFromTheAbyss/

Listen to it, it will amaze you I think

fightingfalcon
Jan 10th 2008, 03:45 PM
I'm tired of arguing about this on the board, but this is simply not true. There are many types of evolution, types of evolutionists, and YOU would not like being lumped into one general category of Christian.

You can argue many evolutionistic points with me and have a chance but not on this one... I know the background of this argument and it was created by an evolutionist/atheist and is used by them frequently to call the bible incompetent, contradictive and say it cannot be trusted and ultimately to say there is no God... I have argued with many evolutionists, I am not saying I am good at it but I do know this point is true...

Buck shot
Jan 10th 2008, 04:10 PM
1. What do you mean the bible is "black and white?"
Simply, I take it for true as it is written
2. What do you mean you "take it as written?"
Simply, I believe what I read
3. What do you mean God is not a God of confusion (before answering do a search for the thread on this scripture)?
Simply, God wants "His children" to understand His word
4. What do you mean by your last sentence?
Simply, that a person in that time would not have known what we know now about the solar system.

You basically said nothing in your post because you were not clear in defining your terms. I have no idea how to respond to them.

Sorry, Now I think I know how Jesus felt when he was asked "what did you mean" when he told a parable. I honestly thought you would get my points even if you did not agree. I will try to remember to deliver milk from now on. Sorry I did it again. I mean, I will try to speak simpler.

Kahtar
Jan 10th 2008, 04:11 PM
:hmm: Looks like a good place to remind everyone to discuss the topic, not each other...............

(Not pointing any fingers, by the way, speaking to all of you...)

Buck shot
Jan 10th 2008, 04:12 PM
Your right sorry about that :giveup:

ImmenseDisciple
Jan 10th 2008, 08:04 PM
This is a argument used by evolutionists to prove the bible is not inspired and there is no God... you can claim otherwise but that is in fact were it originated, actually an atheistic doubt.To clarify, this is just my own musings on the text, I'm not picking up on someone else's theory or argument at all. No more evolution talk, please guys. That's not even nearly what this is about :)


I find this whole idea extremely tenuous. Your metaphor idea breaks down completely because we know the sun is an actual light and it is included with the moon as one of the "great lights". So to be consistent in your case, the sun must also be a metaphor..Sorry, my thread title was confusing - I use the term "metaphor" merely to mean the figure of speech in which the moon, a non-luminous rock, is referred to as a light. It is not literally such, but of course metaphorically speaking it is.


About the lights... even educated people of this day and age use the word "light" to refer to what is in fact reflected light and which in and of itself does not produce light...Would an educated person see a light reflected in a puddle and say "look! two lights!!!" Would, then a being beyond education, a being of perfect, absolute knowledge? I'm inclined to say that were He talking literally, He would not, but I'm not as concrete as you in an assumption either way.


You have brought this up in an interesting way. I would rather argue that a good reading of the text forces us to see the words in light of the ancient near eastern context. We have to understand how the Jews would have read this. If you read the text, the purpose of the light seems to be to delineate seasons. This would have been very important to an agricultural society and would have been very important because God stands over this creation as God of the sun, the moon, and the seasons. They needed to know that God would be with them.Very true. I had completely overlooked how it would have been understood by those who originally read it, schoolboy error :D But in stating a simplified truth for the sake of their understanding, which knowing what we do today we can recognise as such, there's certainly still the possibility that God has planted more in the verse for today's faithful.


maw-ore', meh-o-raw'

The word from which our term "meteor" derives. That is to say, not "light" as in radiance, but light as an instrument which gives light - a lamp, a candle, for example. Objects which reflect light, like the moon, are also "light bearers", instruments of light, and not light itself.
Love your post, thanks for the contribution :) It sounds like you really know what you're talking about, so you'll have to bear with me because when it comes to etymology my knowledge starts and ends with my concordance :D
I appreciate what you're saying, but it's tricky to really ascertain whether the meaning of the word would encompass a reflected light, being that there's no parallel for us to compare with. In the case of a lamp or candle the light itself is sourced within the object which could be referred to as a 'light'. I can see myself saying to someone "Can you bring that light?" Referring to a torch or whatever, so it makes sense to me that the word could operate in this sense. I guess it's a judgement call, so we'll assume the term does encompass reflected light; does it strike you as odd that He would refer to sunlight and reflected sunlight as two distinct lights, if He were talking literally? God made two great lights. Only He didn't :D

TEITZY
Jan 10th 2008, 10:54 PM
does it strike you as odd that He would refer to sunlight and reflected sunlight as two distinct lights, if He were talking literally? God made two great lights. Only He didn't :D

The only "odd" thing I see in this whole issue is the great lengths people go to to try and complicate the simple plain reading of Genesis. However Jesus actually believed in a literal Genesis and he concurs with Moses regarding moonlight in Matt 24:29:

“Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.

Obviously Jesus is aware that the moon only reflects the light of the sun but He still considers it appropriate to refer to the moon as having "its light" and here He also makes a distinction between the two "great lights" so I really don't see what is so "odd" about the Genesis account.

Cheers
Leigh

ImmenseDisciple
Jan 10th 2008, 11:57 PM
The only "odd" thing I see in this whole issue is the great lengths people go to to try and complicate the simple plain reading of Genesis. However Jesus actually believed in a literal Genesis and he concurs with Moses regarding moonlight in Matt 24:29:

“Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.

Obviously Jesus is aware that the moon only reflects the light of the sun but He still considers it appropriate to refer to the moon as having "its light" and here He also makes a distinction between the two "great lights" so I really don't see what is so "odd" about the Genesis account.

Cheers
LeighI am not going to great lengths to try and complicate The Book, I am going to great lengths to understand it as much as I can, and in the process trying to be sure that I evaluate any messages that I should see. I would never accuse you of grossly simplifying His work by taking it literally, please don't accuse me of doing harm in looking from a different perspective to yours. I know you mean nothing by it, but it is better left unsaid :)

Incidentally, that's an interesting quote there. "The sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light." Of course, were He saying that the moon would not give the light it produces, it would show a misunderstanding of the universe. The phrase, however, seems constructed perfectly so that it can be taken to mean not just that the moon will not give it's own light, but also that the moon will not give the sun's light.

In NKJV this secondary meaning seems more overtly implied; "The sun will be darkened in its going forth, and the moon will not cause its light to shine" I can't really see that to mean anything else, to be honest. The moon "will not cause" it's own light to shine? eh? The moon will not cause the sun's light to shine? Spot on... That guy sure knew what He was talking about, that's for sure :)

Aside from that - if you've any verses that state the Christ held Genesis a literal account I'd love to know them. There's nothing surer to completely change my opinion in an instant :D

th1bill
Jan 11th 2008, 01:11 AM
The passage is either the truth or we have believed a lie! Personally, God has never lied to me so it's the gospel truth.

TEITZY
Jan 11th 2008, 02:13 AM
I am not going to great lengths to try and complicate The Book, I am going to great lengths to understand it as much as I can, and in the process trying to be sure that I evaluate any messages that I should see. I would never accuse you of grossly simplifying His work by taking it literally, please don't accuse me of doing harm in looking from a different perspective to yours. I know you mean nothing by it, but it is better left unsaid :)

I apologize for any offense taken, but what is it exactly you are trying to achieve? Correct me if I'm wrong, but I assume you believe in evolution, long ages and possibly the Big Bang as well? I also assume you are trying to harmonize these beliefs with the Genesis account? By now you've also realized that a natural plain reading of the text completely contradicts the theory of evolution & long geologic ages. So what is the solution to your dilemma? Does superimposing your beliefs upon the text bring greater clarity than a simple straight forward reading of Genesis? IMHO it only complicates things.



Incidentally, that's an interesting quote there. "The sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light." Of course, were He saying that the moon would not give the light it produces, it would show a misunderstanding of the universe. The phrase, however, seems constructed perfectly so that it can be taken to mean not just that the moon will not give it's own light, but also that the moon will not give the sun's light.

In NKJV this secondary meaning seems more overtly implied; "The sun will be darkened in its going forth, and the moon will not cause its light to shine" I can't really see that to mean anything else, to be honest. The moon "will not cause" it's own light to shine? eh? The moon will not cause the sun's light to shine? Spot on... That guy sure knew what He was talking about, that's for sure :)


Not sure what version of the NKJ that is but it is certainly not the way mine translates nor the majority of the other versions for that matter. Having said that I think what you suggest is possibly a valid interpretation as I considered it myself before posting the verse. Even so I don't really think it diminishes the meaning of the Gen 1 passage as being literal. Certainly there are other OT passages that speak of the moon giving light in association with the sun and I think this common linkage of the two only reinforces the historicity of the Genesis account.


Aside from that - if you've any verses that state the Christ held Genesis a literal account I'd love to know them. There's nothing surer to completely change my opinion in an instant :D

Below is a link to an old thread where I discuss these issues and the importance of a literal Genesis to NT authority. Below is also a brief excerpt from one post.

http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php?t=49996


Anyway, Jesus not only spoke about the Genesis flood (Matt 24:36-44) but also used Gen 1 as the basis for marriage (Matt 19:4-6). Peter also spoke of the flood as a literal event (2 Pet 2:5, 3:6) while Paul clearly taught a literal Adam and Eve and serpent (Rom 5:12-19; 1 Cor 11:8-9, 15:45-49; 2 Cor 11:3; 1 Tim 2:13-14). If ALL of Genesis (esp Ch. 1-11) is not literally true then this makes a nonsense of much of the NT teaching of Jesus and His Apostles.


Cheers
Leigh

ImmenseDisciple
Jan 11th 2008, 08:25 PM
I apologize for any offense taken, but what is it exactly you are trying to achieve? Correct me if I'm wrong, but I assume you believe in evolution, long ages and possibly the Big Bang as well? I also assume you are trying to harmonize these beliefs with the Genesis account? By now you've also realized that a natural plain reading of the text completely contradicts the theory of evolution & long geologic ages. So what is the solution to your dilemma? Does superimposing your beliefs upon the text bring greater clarity than a simple straight forward reading of Genesis? IMHO it only complicates things. A lot of assumption :D I find the attempts science makes to explain our origins a noble exploit, and an utter stab in the dark, an attempt at the staggeringly impossible, and their findings a deeply flawed 'conviction' for anyone to hold. I am new to faith, and have yet to study Genesis properly, but I saw the verse I referred to in a Christian video and it got me thinking. I am currently of the opinion that the creation account given in Genesis is probably massively simplified so that those who read it can make any sense out of it, and to simplify would inevitably mean speaking metaphorically. I admit that this view is going to mean I take the text very differently to someone who has already set their mind on a literal interpretation. I have no problem with viewing the Genesis creation as a literal account, but I'm just searching the word and trying to make sense of it for myself.


Not sure what version of the NKJ that is but it is certainly not the way mine translates nor the majority of the other versions for that matter. Having said that I think what you suggest is possibly a valid interpretation as I considered it myself before posting the verse. Even so I don't really think it diminishes the meaning of the Gen 1 passage as being literal. I don't think it relates to the Genesis passage at all, tbh, I'm not familiar with the verse though, and was impressed at how clear an understanding it shows. I must have jumped to the verse's quoted passage instead, though, I quoted Isaiah 13:10. Oops :)

TEITZY
Jan 11th 2008, 11:34 PM
A lot of assumption :D I find the attempts science makes to explain our origins a noble exploit, and an utter stab in the dark, an attempt at the staggeringly impossible, and their findings a deeply flawed 'conviction' for anyone to hold. I am new to faith, and have yet to study Genesis properly, but I saw the verse I referred to in a Christian video and it got me thinking.

Ok fine:) When you say "origins" above, does this also include biological evolution?



I am currently of the opinion that the creation account given in Genesis is probably massively simplified so that those who read it can make any sense out of it, and to simplify would inevitably mean speaking metaphorically. I admit that this view is going to mean I take the text very differently to someone who has already set their mind on a literal interpretation. I have no problem with viewing the Genesis creation as a literal account, but I'm just searching the word and trying to make sense of it for myself.


Yes, from a scientific point of view it is a 'simplified' account, but the Bible is not a science text book either, though it is scientifically accurate. As we read through the Bible (progressive revelation) we don't find anything to undermine the Genesis account but rather its 'simple' truths are reinforced and upheld throughout the Scriptures.

If you don't believe in evolutionary cosmology or biology but also reject a literal interpretation of Genesis, what does it all mean to you then?

Cheers
Leigh

ImmenseDisciple
Jan 12th 2008, 12:47 AM
Ok fine:) When you say "origins" above, does this also include biological evolution?
Absolutely, although I think that progressive adaptation on a macro scale is certainly present. Suggesting the entire scope of life on the planet evolved from one single cell source, on the other hand, is really, really, massively ludicrous. Short of God's direct hand throughout the process, it seems to me to be very clearly impossible.


Yes, from a scientific point of view it is a 'simplified' account, but the Bible is not a science text book either, though it is scientifically accurate. As we read through the Bible (progressive revelation) we don't find anything to undermine the Genesis account but rather its 'simple' truths are reinforced and upheld throughout the Scriptures.

If you don't believe in evolutionary cosmology or biology but also reject a literal interpretation of Genesis, what does it all mean to you then?

Cheers
Leigh
I don't mean simply that in scientific terms we are told a less than complete story, although that goes without saying. More, I doubt that God "speaks" things into existance, rather He puts it in such terms so that we can relate. I also don't think He stopped at the end of each day's work to look over His creation and observe that it was coming along nicely, this strikes me as another humanisation of His actions. Further, I don't see that we should assume a literal single rotation of the earth is the time period referred to when He says "day". Following this, when He creates the creatures of the sea and sky, I see no call to assume it is an immediate transition from "nothing" to "every moving and living thing", there is every possibility that their creation could be a longer process. As far as I'm concerned, at the very least there's plenty of room for metaphor in just about every aspect of the creation story. I don't see that recognising this detracts from the credibility and importance of the account, far from it. That said - I totally accept and totally recognise that God could have created the universe in the precise manner laid out in Genesis specifically so that He would later be able to describe it to us in terms we could understand!
As to what it all means to me, then, I suppose it's just another thing too great to be understood. I've accepted that in this life, unless the Spirit gives me a conviction that the Genesis creation is a literal account, I can never know how the universe came about. That's fine by me :D

tgallison
Jan 12th 2008, 01:12 AM
Are believers not a light, though only a reflection of the greater light.

terrell

ImmenseDisciple
Jan 12th 2008, 11:20 AM
Are believers not a light, though only a reflection of the greater light.
Amen to that! That said - if I was stood next to God, I wouldn't suggest we were two great lights! :D

BadDog
Jan 13th 2008, 07:02 AM
In stating here that the Sun and the Moon are "two great lights" is God explicitly saying to us that His account of creation is to be taken as metaphorical? It goes without saying that He knew full well we would learn for ourselves that the moon is not "a light", it's apparent glow merely a reflection of the sun, so is this His pointer to us that we aren't to take Genesis literally?
Plenty of discussion please :DGood question. One thing we do know is that Christ referred to this text (Genesis 1) in a manner not so metaphorical, so we need to be careful. But IMO it may be referring to allowing those "great lights" to becoming visible to the earth's surface (inhabitants).

The focus of this text is not science, but salvation - mankind's fall and need for a plan of salvation.

BD

markedward
Jan 13th 2008, 07:08 AM
In stating here that the Sun and the Moon are "two great lights" is God explicitly saying to us that His account of creation is to be taken as metaphorical? It goes without saying that He knew full well we would learn for ourselves that the moon is not "a light", it's apparent glow merely a reflection of the sun, so is this His pointer to us that we aren't to take Genesis literally?
Plenty of discussion please :DNo more metaphorical than when God made the sun "stand still" when the Hebrews prayed for it. We commonly accept that the "standing still" part was no more literal than saying something like "sunrise" or "sunset." We know that the sun itself is not setting, we simply use terms that come from our perspective. So when Genesis says God created to "great lights," it is being spoken of in our perspective that the moon gives off its own light. Getting caught up in terminology and whether the Bible speaks scientifically correct is only going to cause confusion to ourselves. The intended meaning is that God created two objects in space that give off light, whether by internal or external sources, but it's not going to spell out everything to us in a scientist's language.

Equipped_4_Love
Jan 13th 2008, 07:21 AM
Love your post, thanks for the contribution :) It sounds like you really know what you're talking about, so you'll have to bear with me because when it comes to etymology my knowledge starts and ends with my concordance :D
I appreciate what you're saying, but it's tricky to really ascertain whether the meaning of the word would encompass a reflected light, being that there's no parallel for us to compare with. In the case of a lamp or candle the light itself is sourced within the object which could be referred to as a 'light'. I can see myself saying to someone "Can you bring that light?" Referring to a torch or whatever, so it makes sense to me that the word could operate in this sense. I guess it's a judgement call, so we'll assume the term does encompass reflected light; does it strike you as odd that He would refer to sunlight and reflected sunlight as two distinct lights, if He were talking literally? God made two great lights. Only He didn't :D

I'm surprised that no one has brought up the point that the sun is actually a star:

Gen. 1:16 Then God made 2 great lights: The greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night. He made the stars also.

So, then, why would the Scripture not classify the sun as a star? Simply because man had no idea that it was a star...to him, it was a great light.
The creation account was written for man; likewise, God inspired it in a way that man could comprehend.
The Creation account was not written as a technical treatise...It was written as a basic outline to explain how the world came into existence, through the creative hand of God. I do believe that the creation account is authoritative, but only to the extent that man would be able to understand.

ImmenseDisciple
Jan 13th 2008, 09:19 AM
I'm surprised that no one has brought up the point that the sun is actually a star:

Gen. 1:16 Then God made 2 great lights: The greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night. He made the stars also.
That's a great point, I had completely overlooked that.

So, then, why would the Scripture not classify the sun as a star? Simply because man had no idea that it was a star...to him, it was a great light.
The creation account was written for man; likewise, God inspired it in a way that man could comprehend.
The Creation account was not written as a technical treatise...It was written as a basic outline to explain how the world came into existence, through the creative hand of God. I do believe that the creation account is authoritative, but only to the extent that man would be able to understand.I agree with that actually, it's the extent to which we can understand which is my only real issue - because while we may not have progressed very far (at all, actually) since Genesis was first read, we're certainly capable of understanding a little bit more :D

ImmenseDisciple
Jan 13th 2008, 09:24 AM
Good question. One thing we do know is that Christ referred to this text (Genesis 1) in a manner not so metaphorical, so we need to be careful.
I know He spoke of Adam and Eve, and being that Adam is the start of His blood line I'm certainly not questioning that. Unfortunately there was no real cause for Him to say "When my Father created the world exactly as laid out in Genesis." that would really clear things up :D

But IMO it may be referring to allowing those "great lights" to becoming visible to the earth's surface (inhabitants).There's certainly a case for that.

The focus of this text is not science, but salvation - mankind's fall and need for a plan of salvation.

BDAbsolutely, this is a minor issue of no real significance.

ImmenseDisciple
Jan 13th 2008, 09:30 AM
No more metaphorical than when God made the sun "stand still" when the Hebrews prayed for it. We commonly accept that the "standing still" part was no more literal than saying something like "sunrise" or "sunset."
This is where my lack of knowledge becomes very obvious :D Could you tell me the passages you're referring to? Thanks :)

We know that the sun itself is not setting, we simply use terms that come from our perspective. So when Genesis says God created to "great lights," it is being spoken of in our perspective that the moon gives off its own light. Getting caught up in terminology and whether the Bible speaks scientifically correct is only going to cause confusion to ourselves.
I'm certainly not aiming for confusion, but I think we should all have a healthy flexibility to our beliefs. It's nice that I've brought this up and people seem to have given it some thought when they've no doubt not really considered the issue in years.

The intended meaning is that God created two objects in space that give off light, whether by internal or external sources, but it's not going to spell out everything to us in a scientist's language.
I have no doubt that was the intention of the hand that wrote it, but God's intentions could be twofold, threefold or a millionfold :D

markedward
Jan 13th 2008, 09:00 PM
Could you tell me the passages you're referring to? ThanksJoshua 10:1-15.

From human perspective, the sun "stood still" in the sky, though in a scientific view, it had to have been the earth that stopped rotating, not the sun having stopped moving. But despite that Joshua probably didn't understand that the earth rotates on an axis as it orbits the sun and that it would have to have been the earth that "stood still" rather than the sun, he did understand that he needed the sun to stay visible in the sky and God obviously understood the intended meaning of what Joshua was praying for.

The key point, though, is that it was a statement made from human perspective, not scientific knowledge. From human perspective, the sun and moon are two "great lights" in the sky, in that they are both large in size and give off more light to the earth than any of the stars. Scientifically, the sun is a star, yes, but from human perspective it is a unique light in the sky, far brighter and far larger than any of the stars we ever see. And scientifically speaking the moon does not give off its light, but from human perspective it is a large source of light, but lesser than the sun, just as the Genesis account shows.